Powerboat-World.com
 
 
News Home Video Gallery Newsletters Features FishingBoating Photo Gallery Sail-World Australia Australian Cruising
MarineBusiness-World
Sail-World.com : Rolex Sydney Hobart - Love & War in the rigours of the NSW south coast
Rolex Sydney Hobart - Love & War in the rigours of the NSW south coast

'Left: Lindsay May (navigator on Love & War) and Simon Kurts (owner of Love & War)'    Andrea Francolini ©
Back in 2005, the newest, flashiest, all-singing-all-dancing super-yacht Wild Oats XI won the CYCA's Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race overall after smashing the race record in a triumph of carbon fibre, canting keels and state of the art boat design and engineering – but one year on, things changed dramatically.

In 2006, Australian yachting’s ultimate prize, the Tattersall’s Cup, was seized by a 33 year old wooden boat in an uphill, somewhat slow motion smash-and-grab raid, aided and abetted by a mystery four knot southerly current that nobody in the rest of the fleet had ever suspected.

Love & War had won the CYCA’s race in 1974 and 1978. Now, almost 30 years later, the beautiful Oregon and Maple S&S 47 had cemented her place as one of Australia’s truly great ocean racing thoroughbreds. At her helm (with the blessing of the yacht’s owner Simon Kurts) was the boat’s navigator, Lindsay May.

Such is ocean racing.

On Boxing Day Love & War will again carry May, one of Australia’s foremost navigators, down Sydney Harbour and out into the rigours of the NSW south coast and the big seas of Bass Strait. It will be his 40th Hobart start and he will be back navigating, while Simon Kurts will be back at the helm.

Curiously, of those 39 starts so far, the highlight for May is not 2006, but a race he did not finish. The horrendous 1993 race, 'when we rescued John Quinn.' Just 38 of 104 starters made it to Hobart.

Sailing on Atara that year, Mays’s race was already over, Atara’s mast broken when she was rolled by a freak wave, when they heard on the radio that John Quinn was lost at sea.

'We were on our way home when we heard that Quinn had been washed off his yacht, Mem, after the stitching on his safety harness came apart when the boat was hit by a huge wave. We went back to help look for him and nearly ran over him,' May remembered.

The rescue of John Quinn was one of those inexplicable miracles. By all rights, in the terrible conditions that night he should have been a goner.

'He saw us - we didn’t see him. He had no light; there were no strobes and personal EPIRBS in those days. He was just a dark blob in the grey ocean,' May recalled.

A fast current had swept Quinn miles from where he’d first gone over, and where his mates on Mem were desperately looking for him. Yet somehow, amid the shrill roar of wind and waves, a crew member on the tanker Ampol Sorrel had heard his call for help and spotted him in its searchlight.

'We heard on the radio that the tanker Ampol Sorrel had seen him in its searchlight, but couldn’t retrieve him, so we just headed for the tankers lights.

'We had a lot of delamination where the broken mast had smashed against Atara’s side. When we pulled John Quinn out of the water, we asked him if he had seen how bad the damage was. I’ll never forget his reply. ‘When the ambulance arrives you don’t notice the condition of the duco,’' May said.

By May’s count, he has sailed in 20 different boats for 17 different owners. Many became good friends, especially the late Peter Kurts, the original owner of Love & War, and Peter’s son Simon, who was left the boat when his father died in January 2005 as his beloved yacht was sailing through Sydney Heads on its return from Hobart.

Yet, the yacht that completely won May’s heart was Brindabella, George Snow’s lovely 80 foot maxi. May raced her eight times with Snow, and once with her subsequent owner, Jim Cooney.

Love & War, Lindsay May navigator - Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2009 -  © Rolex-Daniel Forster   Click Here to view large photo
'She is a great boat; very pretty and she’s performed really well over many years. Line honours in 1997, second four times, and second overall in ‘99, the year Yendys won.

'George was a fabulous owner, a very competent leader, but he’s also able to get everyone to have a lot of fun,' May says. 'It was like a football club’s trip away; you work hard but lots of laughs.'

Snow was on Love & War (according to Snow, he was the cook), in 2006. Indeed most of the crew that year were ex-Brindabellians, and George’s son Richard will be aboard for this year’s race.

Surprisingly, May came to sailing quite late in life, already a young man. He can remember the day that he got hooked.

'I was a competitive surf lifesaver and swimmer when a member of RANSA asked me if I’d like to come sailing on his Endeavour 24; and it was the noise of the water on the hull as we glided down the harbour,' May recollected.

A few months later, Des Kelly, another RANSA member, invited May on a voyage to New Zealand. 'If I knew then what I know today, I would never have gone,' he says. 'It was an old wooden boat and Des was the only person with any offshore experience. We got hammered for three days.'

From that experience, though, came May’s first Hobart ride, in 1973. In 1975 he was so desperate for another that he declared: 'I’ll even go as navigator,' and the die was cast.

'The ‘75 was a very fast race, but the second half was in heavy fog,' he said There were no satnavs or GPS then, just dead reckoning between sun and star sights taken when you could on a sextant from a rolling, bucking deck.

'No-one could get a sun-sight because of the fog, and their dead reckoning was out because the logs were under-reading when the boats surfed down waves. A lot of boats completely missed Tasman Island and ended up having to backtrack 30 odd miles,' May said.

'I got one sight in and worked out we were 40 miles south of our dead reckoning position. I didn’t believe it, so I got out the old RDF (radio direction finder) and lined up Hobart’s radio stations.

'The RDF put us 40 miles south of where I thought I was too, so I said to the skipper, ‘Tasman Island must be just over there’. He said, ‘We’d better gybe then’, and sure enough, we found Tasman Island three miles astern.

'Prior to ‘83, when satnav was introduced, the ability to know where you were within a few miles was a big plus.' May’s name as a navigator was on a roll.

It was his navigational diligence that triumphed, too, in 2006. 'I’m a great user of current. It doesn’t matter so much on modern high speed boats, but on slower boats that do maybe eight knots, a few knots of current can up your speed by 50%.

'The first thing I do is plot where the current is on a paper chart and work out whether it is worthwhile. We got four knots of current, while boats a few miles inshore of us were only getting two. We got 50 miles for nothing,' the navigator told.

'Peter Kurts was a great believer in sailing the making leg; the route that points most directly towards Hobart. I do too - provided it doesn’t force you onto the western side of the course close to Tasmania’s coast - the light south-easters there kill you.'

The Sydney yachtsman loves the new technology available to navigators these days, and the fact that you can see on your laptop where everyone else is and what they are up to.

'It is so much more exciting,' reveals May, who likes the dash of the modern ocean racing yachts too, such as the TP52, Strewth, which he navigated to Hobart last year. 'When you’re doing mid 20’s (knots), covering so many miles - I’ll miss that - Love & War is flat out doing eight.

'There’s not much exhilaration on Love & War – just fright now and then,' admits May, who describes himself as very competitive. 'And you need to be at this level. It doesn’t matter if you are on a gun boat as long as you are on a boat that has a chance.

'There are some boats that will never win,' he maintains. 'They are not going flat out 24 hours a day, but if you can do that, you can win this race.'

Hobart races beyond 40, May says, 'As long as I can find someone who will offer me a position I will keep doing the Hobart. While I’m healthy why would I stop?

'I just can’t contemplate not going.'

Rolex Sydney Hobart website


by Jim Gale

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.powerboat-world.com/index.cfm?nid=104822

9:52 PM Tue 18 Dec 2012GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.


Related News Stories:

19 Dec 2012  Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 – Sailors with disabilities make return
18 Dec 2012  Clipper Race champ still hopes to land crew place in Boxing Day's race
18 Dec 2012  Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 – Warwick Sherman living life to fullest
18 Dec 2012  Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2012 – Ragamuffin-Loyal on track
18 Dec 2012  Rolex Sydney Hobart - Kinsmans have the Race in their crosshairs
17 Dec 2012  Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Wild Oats XI set to fly
16 Dec 2012  CYCA Trophy Series 2012 - Final Day images by Andrea Francolini
16 Dec 2012  Trophy Passage Series 2012 – Ichi Ban edges Lahana for overall crown
16 Dec 2012  Trophy Passage Series 2012 – Lahana squeaks past Ichi Ban in Race 2
14 Dec 2012  Wild Oats XI to unveil new keel modification ahead of Boxing Day race
MORE STORIES ...






Power Boat News

British luxury Motor Yacht manufacturer, Fairline Boats, has announced plans to introduce eight new models over the next three years, with full details to be unveiled at the London Boat Show in January 2015. The news follows on from Fairline’s recent announcement of a major human investment into its engineering capability. ... [more]  

A pivotal metropolitan marine communications centre has been upgraded in a $200,000 project to help safeguard boaters on Sydney Harbour and surrounding waters. The Speaker of the Australian Parliament and Member for Mackellar Bronwyn Bishop will today open the new-look Marine Rescue Terrey Hills radio base, which has been significantly refurbished to secure its operational capability. ... [more]  

The media conference marks the opening of the 2014 China (Macau) International Yacht Import and Export Fair, which will take place at the Grand Colane Resort from 7-9 November. The three-day fair promises to offer its valuable guests a vibrant experience of luxury lifestyle and oceanic culture. ... [more]  

Genoa International Boat Show 2014 ‘in recovery’ by Guy Nowell, Sail-World Asia, Hong Kong
Once upon a time, and not so very long ago, Genoa was very much the numero uno Mediterranean boat show, with 3,000+ boats in the water and practically every manufacturer on the planet anxious to be seen there. The combined effect of the financial crisis 2008-onwards and subsequent financial austerity measures imposed by the Italian government, including swingeing taxes on luxury products ... [more]  

2015 Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show - After a successful 2014, Mulpha Sanctuary Cove is gearing up for its 27th annual Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show, with exhibitor opportunities opening next week (November 6). ... [more]  

Built by one of Japan’s premier shipyards, EAGLE ONE has kept pace with modern luxury with a series of refits, most recently 2014, and is for sale, under $1m. ... [more]  

WWF-Australia and the Australian Marine Conservation Society have released a 10-point plan to save the Great Barrier Reef, in response to the Queensland Government’s Draft Reef 2050 strategy. ... [more]  

The famous Henri Lloyd Summer Sample Sail is in now at the Henri Lloyd showroom in Crows Nest, Sydney! Huge range of samples and discontinued lines from Henri Lloyd's marine, footwear and lifestyle collections for men and women. Discounts of up to 80% off original RRP! ... [more]  

2014 Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show - Australia’s leading superyacht organisation, Superyacht Australia will be showcasing the best of Australian brands at 2014 Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show and promoting Australia as a cruising destination for global suoeryacht fleet. ... [more]  

SOS Marine and Mobilarm subsidiary Marine Rescue Technologies ('MRT') announce today that the sMRT Inflatable SOS Dan Buoy is one of the 45 products that have been nominated for final judging by the Design Award METS (DAME) 2014 jury. The products have been selected from a total of 116 entries from 23 nationalities from all over the world. ... [more]  

Superior recently signed an MOU with South Korean manufacturer and marine industry proponent, Scotra. ... [more]  

Sediments associated with dredging and flood plumes could have a significant impact on fish populations by extending the time required for the development of their larvae, according to Australian researchers. 'Sediment concentrations at levels found in plumes from dredging or in floods cause a significant delay in the development of clownfish larvae,' says study lead author, Dr Amelia Wenger. ... [more]  

The Tauranga Boat Expo has proven a popular attraction for marine enthusiasts outside the main centres. This year, Lancer has chosen to join the show as part of their tour introducing the market to Sea Blade as well as their other exciting products. ... [more]  

Safer Boating Week ended Friday, but with the start of Labour weekend here, there’s no better time to check your boat is safe and prepared to get out on the water over summer. Coinciding with Labour Weekend, new Auckland Council Navigation bylaws also come into effect from Saturday. ... [more]  

NMMA loses E15 fuel U.S. Court of Appeals Decision by National Marine Manufacturers Association
While the battle in the U.S. over E15 might seem a local issue, its plainly has world-wide flow though for the recreationa marine market.The Engine Products Group, a coalition of organizations that includes NMMA, sought to block the EPA decision. ... [more]  

This partnership brings together two truly functional and enthusiastic events for what will become Australia’s premiere 4x4 and marine super expo. But it doesn’t end there. The ethos behind Explore Australia Expo is to substantially grow the consumer pool by enticing and engaging not only the converted enthusiast but also newcomers and those within parallel or fringe categories. ... [more]  

The organisers of METS have revealed that 45 products have been nominated to go forward for final judging by the jury of the prestigious Design Award METS (DAME) 2014 competition. The products have been selected from a total of 116 entries from 23 nationalities all over the world. ... [more]  

The Barcelona International Boat Show closes its doors in Port Vell this afternoon and confirms a trend towards recovery in the sector. Over the course of five days, the show which presented 120 new products and 650 vessels recorded a large turnover and number of visitors, who were able to take an active part in more than 100 programmed activities. ... [more]  

There is still time to purchase a copy of the new RYA Advanced Powerboat Handbook by Paul Glatzel and be in with a chance of winning an RYA Advanced Powerboat course courtesy of the Paul’s RYA Training Centre, Powerboat Training UK. ... [more]  

PredictWind have made significant improvements to the swell forecasting models and added new locations. Integrating the new 50km global wind forecast with ocean current data has created the most advanced swell modelling available online. By combining PredictWind forecast data with ocean current data, the effect of the wind on swells can be accounted for ... [more]  

Imagine finishing the Coastal Classic and relaxing in your own waterfront home at Opua with your boat tugging gently on a deep-water mooring off the lawn. Built to an architect design in 2000, this north-facing waterfront Opua property is a short walk to the marina and boatyard. It is going to auction on November 22. View this Labour Weekend after the Coastal Classic. ... [more]  

The event has historically been conducted at the Brisbane Showgrounds, however as a result of the significant construction and redevelopment of that venue, it has presented many operational difficulties in continuing todeliver a high quality event expected by exhibitors andvisitors to an industry boating showcase. ... [more]  

MMC has presented PaddleNSW with 50 new generation lifejackets so its coaches and instructors can help role model behaviour to further encourage everyone on the water to wear lifejackets. 'The lifejackets will be used to kit out PaddleNSW’s network of training staff and volunteers in key locations across NSW,' said MMC General Manager Howard Glenn. ... [more]  

The Australian marine industry is singing the praises of the fourth annual Gold Coast International Marine Expo, reporting strong sales and even greater prospects in the lead-up to summer. 'Based on exhibitor feedback, the total sales at the Expo alone would certainly be in the order of tens of millions of dollars,' she said. ... [more]  

Volunteer Marine Rescue Southport, at the top of the Gold Coast, now has more of both after fitting twin 300 hp Mercury Verado outboards onto it largest vessel, a 9.5 metre Noosa Cat 3100. ... [more]  

2014 Gold Coast International Marine Expo - Marine Syndication, a division of Marine Auctions, was in full swing at the Gold Coast International Marine Expo that took place at the Gold Coast Marine Precinct in Coomera. ... [more]  

UIM Class 1 Grand Prix of Italy 2014 - Sunday, Terracina (Italy): Luca Fendi and Giovanni Carpitella produced a breath taking performance to take their first win together in C1 at the team’s home Grand Prix, with Aquasport’s Daniel Cramphorn and Nico Huybens producing a totally dominant performance to win in V1. ... [more]  

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Hampton Roads received a report from a concerned friend at 10:30 p.m., Friday stating the two men had departed on a planned 20-minute trip, but had been gone for approximately two hours. The reporting source also stated that the men did not have radios or cell phones aboard. ... [more]  

More than 13,000 visitors flocked to Scotland’s Boat Show 2014 (SBS14) at Kip Marina, Inverclyde last weekend as the boating world showed off everything from a £500 dinghy to an £800,000 Sunseeker luxury powerboat. SBS14 is the largest boat show in Scotland and the third largest in the UK and, with over £15m worth of boats on display, there was something for every budget. ... [more]  

Victory and Bernico-New Star took race 1 honours in a dramatic and incident-filled first race at the Grand Prix of Italy, which was stopped after a first corner spin-out by Tommy One after the start lap, forcing officials to bring out the red flag. ... [more]  

2014 Gold Coast International Marine Expo - The awe-inspiring aerial antics of the Extreme High Diving show at this weekend’s 2014 Gold Coast International Marine Expo have a whole new flavour, with McDonald’s signing up as an event partner. ... [more]  

Alongside the line-up yachts and boats by international and local brands, visitors to this year’s Yacht CN will have a chance to enjoy the exciting Moto Surf China Race, passionate samba dances, bikini model shows, international music band performances, and popular international DJ music on-site. ... [more]  

Boyan Slat is a 20-year-old on a mission - to rid the planet's oceans of floating plastic. He has dedicated his teenage years to finding a way of collecting it. But can the system really work - and is there any point when so much new plastic waste is still flowing into the sea every day? ... [more]  

Discover Boating Week starts tomorrow
Great start to another massive Gold Coast International Marine Expo
2014 Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show - About to start
Changed boating conditions on Sydney Harbour for Australian Boat Race
Safer Boating Week puts spotlight on boaties’ behaviour
2014 Gold Coast Int'l Marine Expo - One more sleep until massive event
King of Offshore - The Untold Story of Reggie Fountain + Video
Italian Grand Prix - Teams head for title decider in Terracina
Boats recovery after Sydney storm
Partnership to encourage lifejacket use
Most boaters start the new boating season safely
Barcelona Int'l Boat Show - 120+ new products and a hundred activities
F1H2O Worlds 2014 - Qatar Team heads to Florida for more F1 testing
Discover Boating Week opens up opportunities to participate
Riviera owners find paradise in one of seven natural wonders
Changed boating conditions for Yarrawonga Multisport Festival
605 Sportsfish named Australia's Greatest Boats 2015 Finalist!
2014 Gold Coast International Marine Expo - Multihulls set to dominate
Update: Stunning finds from ancient Greek Shipwreck
Teams preparing for Key West 2015 season
Search for victims in challenging marine rescue test   
Gold Coast International Marine Expo - Boats to behold … and much more   
Sail Canada - Keel and Power Programs at AGM   
Superior set for METS and enters Waterscape in DAME Awards *Feature   
Roads and Maritime Services seeks proposals for vessel suppliers   
Ferretti Yachts 550 comes to light   
Vicsail - Boat Show Open Day - d'Albora Marina Rushcutters Bay   
Benetti launches Veloce 140 in the Fast Displacement series   
The future is now at 2014 Gold Coast International Marine Expo   
Grand Prix of China - France celebrates treble in Liuzhou   
2014 Gold Coast International Marine Expo - Futuristic and fun toys   
Super Boat National Championships - Great conditions for sixth edition   
Genoa International Boat Show 2014 – everything is relative   
GC International Marine Expo: Sirroco RIB + engine up for grabs   
BIA responds to Sydney Marine Park proposal   
TV awareness campaign calls on boaties to be safe on the water   
2014 NSW Discover Boating Week - Set to kick off this year’s summer   
Lifejackets do save lives - Wear yours on board this long weekend   
Recognition for boating community with Maritime Medal Awards   
Sydney Harbour Marine Park would attract Industry compensation claims   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png   http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW PBW
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT